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Elvans Road Shooting| SE DC

15 Year Old Killed Tragically on Elvans Road in Southeast DC

April 16, 2024 - BLASZKOW LEGAL, PLLC April 16, 2024

WASHINGTON, DC - A 15-year-old was tragically killed on Sunday, in Southeast Washington DC. Information is still being gathered but at this time, it appears that shots were fired from a vehicle, at people standing outside of a building on the 2400 block of Elvans Road SE, at the Skyline Apartments.

The victim in this horrific shooting has been identified as Niomi Russell, a DC resident from Northwest.  Police report that when she was struck, she was able to run inside a nearby building. Police further report that she was shot in the neck and died at the scene.

The vehicle believed to be responsible for the shooting was described by MPD as a silver SUV, with a black top. This vehicle fled immediately after the shooting.

Numerous security cameras are known to be on the property, but no video footage has been released of the vehicle that is currently being searched for.

The location of the shooting is called Skyline Apartments, which has been plagued with repeated security problems, and an increasing volume of criminal activity, including drug traffic and other shootings.

The security company hired by the property, Washington Fields Security, has not released any statement. Nor has Redwood Housing, the entity which owns the apartment complex, or MMS Group, which is believed to operate it (property management).

Blaszkow Legal extends its deepest condolences to the families of Ms Russel in this horrible time.

Negligent Security Claims in Washington, DC

DC law confirms that a property owner has a duty to protect its residents, guests, and visitors from foreseeable harm, including criminal activity. This duty was set down in the case of Kline v. 1500 Massachusetts Avenue Apartment Corp., 439 F.2d 477, 141 U.S.App.D.C. 370 (D.C. Cir. 1970). The Court there confirmed that "...a property owner has a duty to take those measures of protection which are within his power and capacity to take, and which can be reasonably expected to mitigate the risk of intruders assaulting and robbing tenants."

In the case of Skyline Apartments, there are numerous questions that are being asked. At present, the biggest question is: how did this shooting happen? Under normal circumstances,. Skyline Apartments has had round-the-clock security, due to the extremely serious nature of previous incidents, which included shootings. However, during this shooting, there were no security staff on duty. It has been alleged that either the property management or the contracted security company stopped providing a morning shift of armed security officers.

Skyline Apartments has known for some time how dangerous the criminal incidents are on this property, and that is why they have taken some steps to increase their physical security measures, as evidenced by the high fences and guard tower which have been installed. But there again, how did the shooting vehicle over the weekend get in, if there was access control? Upon information and belief, the gates are routinely left open, which allows people - including those with criminal intent - to come and go freely. Enhanced security measures are only effective if used properly, and as part of a layered security approach, which includes security officers, such as DC special police officers.

Investigating Negligent Security Claims in DC

After a shooting such as this, a comprehensive investigation needs to be undertaken, and quickly. The detectives at the DC Metropolitan Police are concerned with catching the perpetrators, not necessarily determining how the incident was able to occur. This is the job of a DC Negligent Security Lawyer.

In these kinds of cases, it is vital to speak to an attorney right away. An experienced personal injury lawyer is going to have a team of investigators, paralegals, and other staff who are going to be able to begin that investigation and figure out not just what happened but how. There are vital questions that the investigation is going to look into:

  • How did the vehicle get into the property?

  • Were the gates closed? If they were open, then why?

  • Why were there no security officers/special police officers on duty?

  • Why was no access control system in place, or operable?

  • Who directed security cut-backs, if any?

  • Were the lapses caused by the property management? The contracted security vendor? Both???

In order to proceed in a case like this, the claimant - the victim's family, in what is now a Wrongful Death case - has to prove the negligence of each party involved.

Contact a DC Negligent Security Lawyer today!

There is no compensation that can help a grieving family after the tragic loss of a loved one. No one would ever be so callous as to suggest there is. But in these cases, sometimes peace of mind is all that can be offered. By speaking to a lawyer, and investigating whether or not the loss happened because of a company's negligence, the family can rest assured, knowing that they are fighting to hold the negligent parties accountable for their lapse.

If you have been hurt, or have lost a loved one in an incident that may have happened due to negligent security, then speak to a Washington DC personal injury Lawyer today.

Call Blaszkow Legal, PLLC today for a free consultation - 703-879-5910

Note: When creating these blog posts, our team of writers utilizes external sources, including local and state news sources, social media platforms, police accident incident reports, state police accident reports, and at times, eyewitness accounts. Please contact us immediately if you discover any incorrect information so that we can update the post with the most current, accurate information available.

Disclaimer: This post is not a business solicitation, and none of the information provided in this blog post should be interpreted as medical or legal advice.

Elvans Road Shooting| SE DCPhoto Credit, top - WTOP | Photo Credit, bottom - NBC 4